More than 40 European leaders have gathered in Prague for the historic inaugural meeting of a new international political forum. The meeting was attended by leaders from the EU, Turkey, Norway, and the Balkans.
Why this is happening
The forum called the European political community is body independent of the EU and championed by the President of France, Emmanuel Macron.
However, there has been skepticism about the new forum, even within the EU, due to worries that it would turn into an “only talk, no action” body. There are also worries that the body does not have the structure to implement their decisions and strategies.
UK’s prime minister, Liz Truss said that the forum was “neither an EU construct or an EU alternative, That the discussion was about cooperating with Europe on issues rather than “about moving closer to Europe.” However, her choice to participate might usher in a new era of UK-Europe relations after Brexit.
What we are looking at.
French President, Emmanuel Macron mentioned developing a “shared strategy” about Russia’s conflict in Ukraine He’d said that they conveyed a “message of unity,”
The summit amongst other things discussed energy, migration and security, with a particular focus on the war in Ukraine. Mr. Macron that the forum would “provide a platform for political co-ordination” for nations, including those in the EU and those outside of it.
Why this matter
The invasion of Ukraine by Russia has renewed interest in international cooperation among countries outside of the EU’s 27 member states. What does the new European Political Community entail?
However, the EPC lacks any organizations or personnel. This has raised concerns about how any choices and decisions would be carried out.
Therefore, the initiative to bring together leaders from across the continent to debate topics of common interest is unusual. If it is a success, it might be held up to twice a year in the future. It might fizzle out if it fails.
As well as the UK, non-EU members Switzerland, Turkey, Norway, Iceland, Georgia, Azerbaijan and western Balkan countries took part in the first gathering of the EPC.